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Cabin Lights Dimmed During Landing At Night  
User currently offlineKrje1980 From Norway, joined Feb 2006, 203 posts, RR: 0
Posted (8 years 3 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 5633 times:

Yesterday I flew MAD-FRA and FRA-BGO on LH. The flight from FRA to BGO was an evening flight, so by the time we approached BGO it was dark outside. As far as I can recall, cabin lights have been dimmed on every single flight I've ever had if the landing has occurred in darkness. However, on this particular flight the lights were not dimmed at all. Does this mean that dimming the lights is not a requirement one always has to follow? Could it have something to do with the aircraft (Canadair Regional Jet 700) not having to follow such procedures? Or did the crew simply forget and thus violated a requirement? I would appreciate it if anyone could tell me.

7 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offlineKaitak From Ireland, joined Aug 1999, 13265 posts, RR: 34
Reply 1, posted (8 years 3 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 5603 times:

It really should be done and Lufthansa should have done it; not sure if it's written into any national safety regs (FARs, JARs, etc), but it's important for safety reasons and the principle is the same as not having the overhead light on in your car while you're driving at night; it's much easier to see obstacles outside if it's dark inside the cabin and in the event of an emergency, where people have to be out in 90s., every second counts.

Not being able to see out properly could result in the slide being opened into deep water or towards an obstacle (railway track, brick wall).

I'd be very surprised if it were not Lufthansa policy to do this and the crew should have done so.

User currently offlineKrje1980 From Norway, joined Feb 2006, 203 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (8 years 3 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 5522 times:


That's what I thought too. I read somewhere that the lights are dimmed so that the passengers' eyes can adjust to night vision so that in case an emergency your eyes see much better than if you go directly from a bright cabin to darkness. I kept saying to myself as we were approaching "why don't they dim the lights?", and I am also surprised that this happened on an airline as professional as LH.

User currently offlineDocLightning From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 23763 posts, RR: 60
Reply 3, posted (8 years 3 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 5507 times:

It takes the human eye about 10 minutes to fully acclimate to darkness. However, about 80% of the adjustment happens during the first 3-4 minutes.

Red light does not have the effect of destroying night vision. Airlines with "mood lighting" could fully light the cabin in red prior to landing and takeoff and still have passengers and crew retain their night vision.

User currently offlineNws2002 From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 1174 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (8 years 3 weeks 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 5365 times:

We always adjust the cabin lighting for takeoff and landing to match outside.

User currently offlineHAWK21M From India, joined Jan 2001, 31875 posts, RR: 54
Reply 5, posted (8 years 3 weeks 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 5273 times:

The FAs def should have dimmed the lights,someone goofed up here.

Think of the brighter side!
User currently offlineWILCO737 From Greenland, joined Jun 2004, 9320 posts, RR: 69
Reply 6, posted (8 years 3 weeks 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 5270 times:

Quoting Kaitak (Reply 1):
I'd be very surprised if it were not Lufthansa policy to do this and the crew should have done so.

It is rule at LH! And I guess they just forgot about it! Not good that they forgot it but it happens. So you were right: it should've been dimmed for landing....

WILCO737 (MD11F)

User currently offlineKimberlyrj From United Kingdom, joined Mar 2008, 385 posts, RR: 1
Reply 7, posted (8 years 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 5233 times:

Hello All

At British Airways it’s recommended that we switch to ‘night take off mode’ where possible around 12 minutes before take off – or as ‘soon as feasibly possible’.

The important thing to remember is that an emergency could take place at anytime on the ground, not just on take off so the sooner we can prepare the passengers the better. On the other side of the scale turning down the cabin lights can pose a health and safety risk, it greatly reduces the crews the crews ability to see hazards or any other objects so there has to be a mixture of both issues, cabin crews visibility and passengers having the lights dimmed for take off for safety reasons.

Sometimes on longer taxis at airports like JFK and sometimes at LHR (a taxi of over 20 minutes) we will have two types of dimmed lights, the first stage is aimed at the passengers and where possible the mood lighting comes on, which are normally light, soft colours – which can help relax pax. The lighting at this stage will also assist the cabin crew do any remaining tasks which remain before take off.

As I said before around 12 minutes before take off (we try and keep the minimum to 8 minutes) and we turn the lights to ‘take off mode’ so the cabin becomes darker, and helps passengers see out those windows! Lol

Quite often after landing we will also leave the lights on landing mode, kept on very low, this is to stop passengers from getting up from their seats, and when we arrive into the stand area we then start turning on the cabin lights. Some crew keep the lights on until doors to manual, I don’t like shocking the passengers eyes to much, so I do it around four minutes before arriving at the stand.

Lighting weather its on or off is really important and could help greatly in the event of an evacuation.


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